As parent, it’s your job to keep your little one safe as they explore the world. While playground falls or little walkers getting away from you in the parking lot may be foremost on your mind, the truth is most childhood accidents occur right at home.
With babies and toddlers, your 1st priority is to create a safe home
environment that still gives your child room to grow and explore. This doesn’t need to be difficult. To get started, we’ll walk you through some of the most common risks as well as the simple and effective steps you can take to keep your little one safe…
Protecting against falls
Falls are the most common childhood injury. And while you can’t prevent every spill – especially with brand new walkers – dangerous falls from height can almost always be avoided.
Preventing falls starts with supervision.
Even newborns can squirm off raised surfaces, so keeping an eye – and a hand – on your baby when they’re on the changing table, bed or sofa is key. The second step in protecting against falls is the safe use of your baby gear. When using a high chair or a bouncer be sure to strap your baby in with the harness. Also make sure the chair is in a secure position away from any small items baby could grab easily, and that bouncers are placed on the floor.
Finally, since stairs are another problem area, be sure to install stair gates at the top and bottom until your little one is big enough to climb safely on their own.
Baby’s skin is very sensitive to heat – hence the reason for keeping bathwater at or just below body temperature. But baths are not the biggest risk – most scalds come from hot coffee, tea and soup. Cords make a tempting target for little hands, so choose a cordless kettle or coffee pot or a model with a coiled cord. It’s also a good idea to put away tablecloths and slippery placemats, since they make it easier for lap babies or toddlers to spill hot drinks.
Safeguarding against other common accidents:
Choking is another common risk area for young children. Certain foods like nuts, popcorn or whole grapes should wait until your child is older.
Toys can also pose risks.
To keep baby safe, be sure to:
- Check the labels on toys to make sure they’re age-appropriate
- throw away toys that are worn or brittle, since broken pieces become a choking hazard
- make it a house rule that older kids keep their toys away from younger siblings
The other major risks for infants and toddlers include cuts, shocks, poisoning and finger pinching. With these, a little childproofing can go a long way in terms of prevention. Drawer and cabinet locks can keep little ones away from harmful objects, cleaning supplies and medicines, while outlet covers offer easy protection against shocks.
Learn room-by-room about safety at home
When to start with child safety
Each stage of child development comes with its own particular set of risks. The best way to get started with creating a safe house is to think about where your child is right now and where they will be in the next few months. The safest strategy is to always stay at least one step ahead of your little one.
With a newborn, your main risks are falls and burns. Even something as simple as a strong startle can cause your baby to roll from a changing table or knock over a coffee cup, so monitoring is important at this stage.
More on newborn safe sleep
Learn more on how to keep crawlers safe
When your baby starts taking steps while holding on to furniture, it’s time to think about taking additional safety precautions. Since walkers like to explore and push their limits, cabinets, drawers and easily climbable furniture are areas you should target. More on helping walkers grow safely.
How we can help
You want to protect your little ones as they grow. We’re here to make your job a little easier with room-by-room advice, home safety tips
and a full range of affordable baby safety products for every stage of development.
Parenting a newborn is a 24-hour job. Our baby monitors and nightlights can help make nights and naptime a little easier and safer. And because it’s important to set up good baby sleep habits at an early age – especially since overtired toddlers are more accident prone – we’ve put together a guide to safe sleep for your newborn.
For crawlers and their growing curiosity about the world, we offer a range of home safety accessories. These socket covers, slam stoppers, drawer latches and cabinet locks will help keep little fingers safe from harm. Your crawler will be on the move all over the house, and there are some places you won’t want them to explore on their own. We also have safety gates and gate extensions to secure almost any space, whether the stairs, balcony or kitchen. To find the perfect fit, read our guide: How to choose a gate.
We can also help as your walker trades the crib for a real bed with bedrails and a guide to keeping your walker safe at night.
With Safety 1st as your partner in accident prevention, you’re now ready to create a safer space for your baby’s first adventures. We’ll provide the tools – the vigilance, supervision and delight at watching your child safely grow and learn is up to you.